This lovely article showed up in my Facebook feed the other day: A Handy Guide To Sex In The Middle Ages. The article focuses on church edicts which prohibit certain sexual acts in the population, and accompanying penances. This is my favorite:
There are others, covering masturbation and women using foreign objects in their vaginas. I prefer to look at these rules/laws as a indirect guide to what people in the middle ages were doing sexually. After all, you don't make laws prohibiting things people aren't doing.
Using the above example, there was gay behavior. There was bestiality (I'll avoid arguing over equating these two behaviors; that's a different blog post.)
Women were crafting or finding objects to serve as phalluses. There were blow jobs with swallowing. There was masturbation, casual sex, and prostitution. Sex within marriage (the only appropriate place for it) had restrictions, acceptable on certain days of the month and only in the missionary position.
I'm going to go out on a limb and say there was quite a lot of sex. I'm also going to give the church the benefit of the doubt and say that there were more reasons for these restrictions other than church doctrine and ultra conservative beliefs.
There are practical reasons for restricting sex: syphilis is an enormous one. There was no cure for syphilis and it killed thousands. There are other sexually transmitted diseases such as herpes and gonorrhea. And this controlled the population and rates of pregnancy. At this time, too, women dying in childbirth was a real, constant threat.
With all these doctrines in place, with specific behaviors having very specific punishments, and with the threat of disease and pregnancy, imagine how exciting sex would be. How difficult it would be to find a safe spot to do it, and the high risk of being caught. Forbidding sex can make some of the most exciting sex ever experienced. Anyone who has committed adultery can attest to this.
Set in Pompeii during the years leading up to the eruption of Vesuvius, this full length novel follows the lives of prostitutes and politicians, gladiators and slaves, the elite an the nouveau riche. Their lives intertwine and the choices they make lead to the destruction of Pompeii.
Coming soon to Nook and Kindle.
Her ass? Her garter belt? Stockings? High heels? Perhaps even her tousled brown hair?
Yes, yes, yes, yes, and yes. But those aren't the reason why I find it sexy.
She reminds me of the prostitutes in Amsterdam in the Red Light district. Standing in their red lit windows, many would make eye contact to men passing by and beckon them over. Many others stood leaning against a wall or sitting on a stool on their cellphones. I found this both amusing and sexy. Just like the pic above.
As with the whores and the pic above, the women are not paying attention to the viewer. Above, the woman looks through a magazine, looking at another woman whose gaze is averted, as if analyzing something in the distance. Her legs are crossed, and its easy to imagine she's been swinging them back and forth idly. She is sexy because the picture makes us voyeurs. We are not looking at her, we are watching her. Observing her as she lives. The whores did this unintentionally, offering to us glimpses of her that are not mediated. We see the smirks or frowns as she reacts to whatever is on her phone. And here we see the suggestion that the stockinged legs swing in boredom over the magazine.
Perhaps she waits for a man. Perhaps a woman. Perhaps for both. Perhaps she got all dressed up in order to feel sexy, and then became bored with the game and started reading a magazine. It is in these unguarded moments, however, when elements of vulnerability emerge, and she becomes exquisitely sexy.
I've been extraordinarily open minded about sex ever since my first year in college, when I learned women could have orgasms. (I was a late bloomer in high school.) Nothing shocks me. All of it interests me. I can never get enough of it.
All of the pics in my blog are stolen/borrowed from other websites. I consider myself not really a thief, but a pirate. Arrrrrrr!!!
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And I thought I was fucked up.